US Department of Energy's third Better Buildings SWAP is about to air
Could harnessing America’s binge-watching habits change the world?
The third US Department of Energy Better Buildings SWAP – an exchange between the City of Atlanta and the City of Boston – is about to launch.
On the 20th of April, this series will be available to watch via the US Department of Energy’s website, and will explore how Mayors Kasim Reed and Marty Walsh take on energy efficiency in their cities – specifically Atlanta’s Hartsfield Jackson International Airport and Boston’s Library at Copely Sqaure – in an engaging reality-style TV format.
As previously explored in our exclusive interview with Senior Program Advisor Maria Vargas, the SWAP mirrors the goal for the US Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge, the initiative it launched in 2011 to improve efficiency of American commercial, institutional, multifamily buildings and industrial plants by 20 percent or more over 10 years. Leading CEOs and executives are coming together and sharing their ideas to help spur billions in new investments and energy savings in their facilities. This third series of the SWAP shines a light on efforts being made in government buildings.
To catch on the first and second series – which saw Whole Foods versus Hilton and the Air Force Academy versus the Naval Academy respectively – click here.
Read the April 2017 edition of Energy Digital magazine
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.